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Financial centres are the main attraction
Financial centres are the main attraction
Published: 2014/03/12
Channel: Financial Times
The Future of International Financial Centres - Richard Hay
The Future of International Financial Centres - Richard Hay
Published: 2014/05/13
Channel: Gresham College
Top Ten Financial Centres of the World
Top Ten Financial Centres of the World
Published: 2016/01/05
Channel: Ten Slides
Asia
Asia's Global Financial Centre
Published: 2014/07/17
Channel: HKTDC
Tour of Smart Financial Centre - Sugar Land Texas
Tour of Smart Financial Centre - Sugar Land Texas
Published: 2017/05/24
Channel: Great Day Houston
Astana International Financial Centre: Official Presentation
Astana International Financial Centre: Official Presentation
Published: 2018/07/05
Channel: Mr. Sam
Hong Kong: The Financial Hub in Asia
Hong Kong: The Financial Hub in Asia
Published: 2014/08/31
Channel: Board TV
4th Tallest Skyscraper: Ping An Finance Centre (Observation Deck View: Free Sky)
4th Tallest Skyscraper: Ping An Finance Centre (Observation Deck View: Free Sky)
Published: 2018/03/12
Channel: edepot hobby
Chapter 1: From a regional to a global hub - the DIFC’s plan - - The rise of Dubai International Fin
Chapter 1: From a regional to a global hub - the DIFC’s plan - - The rise of Dubai International Fin
Published: 2016/09/25
Channel: The Banker
What is OFFSHORE FINANCIAL CENTRE? What does OFFSHORE FINANCIAL CENTRE mean?
What is OFFSHORE FINANCIAL CENTRE? What does OFFSHORE FINANCIAL CENTRE mean?
Published: 2017/04/19
Channel: The Audiopedia
Canary Wharf - Financial Centre and business district of London, UK by Rooms and Menus
Canary Wharf - Financial Centre and business district of London, UK by Rooms and Menus
Published: 2012/08/13
Channel: Rooms and Menus
Istanbul Financial Centre (IFC)
Istanbul Financial Centre (IFC)
Published: 2015/09/30
Channel: Invest Istanbul
Ocean Financial Centre Exterior Lighting
Ocean Financial Centre Exterior Lighting
Published: 2011/02/17
Channel: Jeff 79
Luxembourg Financial Centre: Be part of the future
Luxembourg Financial Centre: Be part of the future
Published: 2015/06/09
Channel: Luxembourg for Finance
Marina Bay Financial Centre subway link in Feb 25, 2014
Marina Bay Financial Centre subway link in Feb 25, 2014
Published: 2014/02/26
Channel: Kong Yuen Sing
Office Rental - Marina Bay Financial Centre MBFC - Marina Boulevard | Singapore Office Spaces
Office Rental - Marina Bay Financial Centre MBFC - Marina Boulevard | Singapore Office Spaces
Published: 2013/09/03
Channel: Singapore Office Spaces
Financial Centre CEO Says Qatar Is an Alternative Hub
Financial Centre CEO Says Qatar Is an Alternative Hub
Published: 2018/05/01
Channel: Bloomberg Markets and Finance
Demo: New Course CA-Final SFM - International Financial Centre (IFC) | CA Ashish Kalra
Demo: New Course CA-Final SFM - International Financial Centre (IFC) | CA Ashish Kalra
Published: 2018/01/13
Channel: IGP Classes
Finance in Dubai - Dubai International Financial Centre - Visit Dubai
Finance in Dubai - Dubai International Financial Centre - Visit Dubai
Published: 2015/11/25
Channel: Visit Dubai
Edinburgh: A Leading European Financial Centre
Edinburgh: A Leading European Financial Centre
Published: 2016/03/10
Channel: Invest Edinburgh
Chapter 26   SFM International Financial Centre By CA Vinod Kumar Agarwal, A S Foundation
Chapter 26 SFM International Financial Centre By CA Vinod Kumar Agarwal, A S Foundation
Published: 2018/03/28
Channel: A.S. FOUNDATION
From local to global - building a modern financial centre
From local to global - building a modern financial centre
Published: 2013/12/06
Channel: City of London
Four Seasons Hotel Dubai International Financial Centre Heart of the House inauguration
Four Seasons Hotel Dubai International Financial Centre Heart of the House inauguration
Published: 2016/12/12
Channel: Ranjith Premraj
Kazakhstan officially inaugurates the Astana International Financial Centre
Kazakhstan officially inaugurates the Astana International Financial Centre
Published: 2018/07/05
Channel: efeinternational
Dubai International Financial Centre
Dubai International Financial Centre
Published: 2012/12/29
Channel: Joseph Stalin
Mon Laferte at Houston, Smart Financial Centre, May/04/2018  #AmarteTour
Mon Laferte at Houston, Smart Financial Centre, May/04/2018 #AmarteTour
Published: 2018/05/06
Channel: Hello, I'm Ivanova
What will Brexit mean for London as a Financial Centre?
What will Brexit mean for London as a Financial Centre?
Published: 2016/12/24
Channel: UKspreadbetting
QFC - Qatar Financial Centre | QCPTV.com
QFC - Qatar Financial Centre | QCPTV.com
Published: 2017/02/13
Channel: QCPTV
Frankfurt, the Business and Financial Centre of Germany
Frankfurt, the Business and Financial Centre of Germany
Published: 2014/03/20
Channel: VideoVoyage.TV
Ocean Financial Centre  - Our development story
Ocean Financial Centre - Our development story
Published: 2014/12/29
Channel: Steve Ang
Offshore Financial Centres (BSE)
Offshore Financial Centres (BSE)
Published: 2016/01/27
Channel: Vidya-mitra
Carlos Santana- Transmogrify Tour @ Smart Financial Centre- 7-03-2017
Carlos Santana- Transmogrify Tour @ Smart Financial Centre- 7-03-2017
Published: 2017/07/04
Channel: Daniel Garcia
The Killers - Mr. Brightside, Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Texas 2018
The Killers - Mr. Brightside, Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Texas 2018
Published: 2018/01/27
Channel: Foxtrot Charlie
Shenzhen Centre (660 meters)
Shenzhen Centre (660 meters)
Published: 2015/05/08
Channel: on the roofs
Brexit and London
Brexit and London's financial centre
Published: 2016/03/01
Channel: The Banker
Is China threatening Asia
Is China threatening Asia's financial center? | CNBC Explains
Published: 2017/07/21
Channel: CNBC International
Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC) Law Courts In Dubai
Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC) Law Courts In Dubai
Published: 2014/01/30
Channel: Dubai Tourism, UK & Ireland
HTown 90s Block Party - May 6th @ Smart Financial Centre
HTown 90s Block Party - May 6th @ Smart Financial Centre
Published: 2017/02/13
Channel: FreshMusicFestival
Mon Laferte @ Smart Financial Centre-Amarte Tour 2018 -Sugarland,TX 5 -04 -2018 Pt 2
Mon Laferte @ Smart Financial Centre-Amarte Tour 2018 -Sugarland,TX 5 -04 -2018 Pt 2
Published: 2018/05/05
Channel: Daniel Garcia
Offshore Financial Centers or Tax Havens
Offshore Financial Centers or Tax Havens
Published: 2013/03/29
Channel: Invest Offshore
Ch14-Centre state Relations (Financial)
Ch14-Centre state Relations (Financial)
Published: 2017/09/01
Channel: BE IAS
Smart Financial Centre, Sugar Land, Texas, USA - Crystal Fountains
Smart Financial Centre, Sugar Land, Texas, USA - Crystal Fountains
Published: 2017/06/22
Channel: Crystal Fountains
City of Sugar Land- Smart Financial Centre Annual Review
City of Sugar Land- Smart Financial Centre Annual Review
Published: 2018/02/08
Channel: SugarLandTXgov
[Forex Trading Tips] #2 Mekanisme Trading Futures by Mulia Financial Centre
[Forex Trading Tips] #2 Mekanisme Trading Futures by Mulia Financial Centre
Published: 2018/01/10
Channel: Mulia Financial Centre
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Financial Centre Metro Station - Dubai City
Published: 2013/11/16
Channel: Eva Trip
Ocean Financial Centre LED Building Launch.m4v
Ocean Financial Centre LED Building Launch.m4v
Published: 2011/09/01
Channel: mikidew
Switzerland on knees? EU trying to weaken Swiss financial centre – politician
Switzerland on knees? EU trying to weaken Swiss financial centre – politician
Published: 2017/12/26
Channel: RT
Financial Centre in Dubai (DIFC)
Financial Centre in Dubai (DIFC)
Published: 2015/02/04
Channel: Art Talks
Great Day on the Road - Welcome to the Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land - 1/7
Great Day on the Road - Welcome to the Smart Financial Centre in Sugar Land - 1/7
Published: 2017/05/23
Channel: Great Day Houston
The Killers - The Man, Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Texas 2018
The Killers - The Man, Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Texas 2018
Published: 2018/01/27
Channel: Foxtrot Charlie
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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The City of London (the "Square Mile") is one of the oldest financial centres and today remains at the heart of London's financial services industry.[1]
New York City's Financial District in Lower Manhattan, which includes Wall Street. Many financial firms have expanded northward to Midtown Manhattan.[2][3]

A financial centre is a location that is home to a cluster of nationally or internationally significant financial services providers such as banks, investment managers, or stock exchanges.[4]:1 A prominent financial centre can be described as an international financial centre (IFC) or a global financial centre and is often also a global city. Regional and national financial centres interact with these leading centres and may act as business feeders or provide local access to them. An offshore financial centre (or OFC) is typically a smaller, low-tax, more lightly regulated jurisdiction that primarily serves as an international corporate tax haven.[note 1]

Today, the two largest financial centres of the world in terms of volumes of capital circulating are London and New York.

Description[edit]

Financial centres are locations with an agglomeration of participants in banking, asset management, insurance and financial markets with venues and supporting services for these activities to take place.[5] Participants can include financial intermediaries (such as banks and brokers), institutional investors (such as investment managers, pension funds, insurers, hedge funds), and issuers (such as companies and governments). Trading activity can take place on venues such as exchanges and involve clearing houses, although many transactions take place over-the-counter (OTC), that is directly between participants. Financial centres usually host companies that offer a wide range of financial advisory services, for example relating to mergers and acquisitions, or which participate in other areas of finance, such as private equity and reinsurance. Other ancillary financial services include rating agencies, as well as related professional services, particularly legal advisory.

Financial centres serve the domestic business of their home country and may also serve international business. International activity occurs as soon as one of the participants in the activity is foreign to the home country of the financial centre, or when the instruments themselves are international in nature such as Eurobonds. The term international financial centre or global financial centre is mostly used to indicate a prominent financial centre where such international or cross-border business takes place.[6][7]

A paper by the International Monetary Fund offers the following definition:[8]

International Financial Centers (IFCs)—such as London, New York, and Tokyo—are large international full-service centers with advanced settlement and payments systems, supporting large domestic economies, with deep and liquid markets where both the sources and uses of funds are diverse, and where legal and regulatory frameworks are adequate to safeguard the integrity of principal-agent relationships and supervisory functions.

History[edit]

The history of financial centres has seen the rise, and decline, of important financial centres driven by events over past centuries.

Origins and pre-modern developments[edit]

Primitive financial centres started in the 11th century in the Kingdom of England at the annual fair of St. Giles and in the Kingdom of Germany at the Frankfurt autumn fair, then developed in medieval France during the Champaign Fairs.[9][10]

Italian city-states[edit]

The first real international financial center was the City State of Venice which slowly emerged from the 9th century to its peak in the 14th century.[9] Tradable bonds as a commonly used type of security, were invented by the Italian city-states (such as Venice and Genoa) of the late medieval and early Renaissance periods.

Low Countries[edit]

For the origin and history of the bourse in general (not to be confused with the concept of the stock exchange and stock market), see exchange (organized market).

In the sixteenth century, the overall economic supremacy of the Italian city-states gradually came to an end and the centre of financial activities in Europe shifted to the Low Countries, first to Bruges, and later to Antwerp and Amsterdam. They, too, became important centres of financial innovation.

17th–18th centuries[edit]

Amsterdam and the financial revolution of the Dutch Republic[edit]

17th-century etching of the Oost-Indisch Huis (Dutch for "East India House"), the headquarters of the United East India Company (VOC) in Amsterdam. Considered by many to be the first historical model of the multinational corporation in its modern sense, the VOC was also the first company to be listed on a formal stock exchange. In other words, the VOC was the world's first publicly listed company (or publicly traded company).
Courtyard of the Amsterdam Stock Exchange (Beurs van Hendrick de Keyser in Dutch), the world's first formal stock exchange. The Amsterdam Stock Exchange was the leading centre of global securities markets in the 17th century.
The Dam Square in Amsterdam, by Gerrit Adriaensz Berckheyde, c. 1660. In the picture of the centre of highly cosmopolitan and tolerant Amsterdam, Muslim/Oriental figures (possibly Ottoman or Moroccan merchants) are shown negotiating. The 17th-century Dutch institutional innovations helped lay the foundations for modern-day international financial centres that now dominate the global financial system.[11][12]

In the 17th century, Amsterdam became the leading commercial and financial centre. It held this position for more than a century,[13][14][15] and was the first modern model of an international financial centre.[16] As Richard Sylla (2015) noted, "In modern history, several nations had what some of us call financial revolutions. These can be thought of as creating in a short period of time all the key components of a modern financial system. The first was the Dutch Republic four centuries ago."[17][18][19] Amsterdam – unlike its predecessors such as Bruges, Antwerp, Genoa, and Venice – controlled crucial resources and markets directly, sending its fleets to all quarters of the world.[20]

During their Golden Age, the Dutch were responsible for three major institutional innovations in economic, financial and business history of the world:

In many respects, the 17th-century Dutch financial innovations helped shape the foundations of modern-day financial system of the world,[46][47][48] and greatly influenced the financial history of many English-speaking countries (especially the United Kingdom and United States)[49][50] in subsequent centuries.

By the early 1800s, London officially replaced Amsterdam as the world's leading financial centre. In his book Capitals of Capital (2010), Youssef Cassis argues that the decline and fall of Amsterdam, as the world's foremost financial capital, was one of the dramatic events in history of global finance.[51]

19th–21st centuries[edit]

London and Paris were the world's only prominent financial centers throughout most of the 19th century.[4]:1 After 1870, Berlin and New York grew to become major financial centres mainly serving their national economies. An array of smaller international financial centers found market niches, such as Amsterdam, Brussels, Zurich, and Geneva. London remained the leading international financial center in the four decades leading up to World War I.[52]:74–75[53]:12–15 Since then, London and New York have developed leading positions in different activities and some non-Western financial centres have grown in prominence, notably Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Rise of London and British financial power[edit]

London has been a leading international financial centre since the 19th century, acting as a centre of lending and investment around the world.[52]:74–75[54]:149 English contract law was adopted widely for international finance, with legal services provided in London.[55] Financial institutions located there provided services internationally such as Lloyd's of London (founded 1686) for insurance and the Baltic Exchange (founded 1744) for shipping.[56] During the 20th century London played an important role in the development of new financial products such as the Eurodollar and Eurobonds in the 1960s, international asset management and international equities trading in the 1980s, and derivatives in the 1990s.[53]:13[1]:6,12–13,88–9[57]

London continues to maintain a leading position as a financial centre in the 21st century, and maintains the largest trade surplus in financial services around the world.[58][59][60] However, like New York, it faces new competitors including fast-rising eastern financial centres such as Hong Kong and Shanghai. London is the largest centre for derivatives markets,[61] foreign exchange markets,[62] money markets,[63] issuance of international debt securities,[64] international insurance,[65] trading in gold, silver and base metals through the London bullion market and London Metal Exchange,[66] and international bank lending.[1]:2[57][67] London benefits from its position between the Asia and U.S. time zones,[68] and has benefited from its location within the European Union,[69]:1 though this may end following the outcome of the Brexit referendum of 2016 and the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union. As well as the London Stock Exchange, the Bank of England, the second oldest central bank, and the European Banking Authority are based in London, although the latter is moving to Paris in March 2019 following Brexit.[70]

USA and the rise of New York City as the first major non-European financial centre[edit]

Since the middle of the 20th century, New York City, represented by Wall Street, has been described as a leading financial centre.[4]:1[71]:25[72]:4–5 Over the past few decades, with the rise of a multipolar world with new regional powers and global capitalism, numerous financial centres have challenged Wall Street, particularly London and several in Asia, which some analysts believe will be the focus of new worldwide growth.[73]:39–49[74] One source described New York as extending its lead as the world's centre of finance in November 2014; according to Kinetic Partners, "New York has proven that it can draw and maintain institutions that believe it is the best place to grow their businesses".[75]

New York City remains the largest centre for trading in public equity and debt capital markets, driven in part by the size and financial development of the U.S. economy.[73]:31–32[76] The NYSE and NASDAQ are the two largest stock exchanges in the world.[77] New York also leads in hedge fund management; private equity; and the monetary volume of mergers and acquisitions. Several investment banks and investment managers headquartered in New York City are important participants in other financial centres.[73]:34–35 The New York Federal Reserve Bank, the largest within the Federal Reserve System, regulates financial institutions and implements U.S. monetary policy,[78][79] which in turn influences the world's economy.[80][81] The three major global credit rating agenciesStandard and Poor's, Moody's Investor Service, and Fitch Ratings – are headquartered or co-headquartered in New York City, with Fitch being co-headquartered in London.

Rise of non-Western financial centres[edit]

In Asia, Tokyo emerged as a major financial centre in the 1980s as the Japanese economy became one of the largest in the world.[4]:1 Hong Kong and Singapore developed soon after leveraging their links with London and Britain.[72]:10–11[82] In the 21st century, other centres have grown including Toronto, Sydney, Seoul and Shanghai. Dubai has become a centre for finance in the Middle East, including for Islamic finance. The rapid rise of India has enabled Mumbai to become an emerging financial centre. Linked to the rise of these new IFCs, has seen the rise of "partner OFCs" (offshore tax-havens to which funds are routed), such as Taiwan (a major Sink OFC for Asia, and 7th largest global Sink OFC), Mauritius (a major Sink OFC for S.E Asia, especially India, and Africa, and the 9th largest global Sink OFC).[83]

Ranking[edit]

Prior to the 1960s, there is little data available to rank financial centres.[4]:1 In recent years many rankings have been developed and published. Two of the most relevant are the Global Financial Centres Index and the International Financial Centres Development Index.[84]

Global Financial Centres Index[edit]

The Central District of Hong Kong, one of the main financial centres in Asia, seen from the Peak.

The Global Financial Centres Index is compiled semi-annually by the London-based British think-tank Z/Yen in conjunction with the Shenzen-based think-tank China Development Institute.[85] London has been the top-ranked centre from the index's inception in 2007, except from March 2014 to September 2015, when New York City led.[85]:7

As of September 2017, the top ten global financial centres are:[85]

Rank Change
Centre
Rating
1 Steady United Kingdom London 780
2 Steady United States New York City 756
3 Increase 1 Hong Kong Hong Kong 744
4 Decrease 1 Singapore Singapore 742
5 Steady Japan Tokyo 725
6 Increase 7 China Shanghai 711
7 Increase 3 Canada Toronto 710
8 Steady Australia Sydney 707
9 Increase 2 Switzerland Zürich 704
10 Increase 6 China Beijing 703

Xinhua-Dow Jones International Financial Centers Development Index[edit]

Frankfurt`s banking district, home to various global and European bank headquarters. The district houses the biggest German stock exchange as well as many European and German regulators.

The Xinhua-Dow Jones International Financial Centers Development Index was compiled annually by the Xinhua News Agency of China with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Dow Jones & Company of the United States from 2010 to 2014. During that time New York was the top-ranked centre. According to the 2014 Xinhua-Dow Jones International Financial Centres Development Index, the top ten financial centres in the world were:[86]

Rank Change
Centre
Rating
1 Steady United States New York City 87.72
2 Steady United Kingdom London 86.64
3 Increase 1 Japan Tokyo 84.57
4 Increase 1 Singapore Singapore 77.23
5 Decrease 2 Hong Kong Hong Kong 77.10
5 Steady China Shanghai 77.10
7 Steady France Paris 64.83
8 Steady Germany Frankfurt 60.27
9 Increase 2 China Beijing 59.98
10 Decrease 1 United States Chicago 58.22

Comparisons[edit]

The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street, the world's largest stock exchange per total market capitalisation of its listed companies.[87]
The London Stock Exchange in the City of London, the most international stock exchange and the largest in Europe.[77]
The International Finance Centre in Hong Kong which opened in 2003.
The Tokyo Stock Exchange, the largest stock exchange in Asia.[77]
The Frankfurt Stock Exchange building, which dates back to 1879.[10]

Old finance centers such as Amsterdam, London, Paris, New York, and Tokyo have long histories.[53][88] Today there is a diverse range of financial centres worldwide.[89] While New York and London often stand out as the leading global financial centres,[90][91] other established financial centres provide significant competition and several newer financial centres are developing.[92] Despite this proliferation of financial centres, academics have discussed evidence showing increasing concentration of financial activity in the largest national and international financial centres in the 21st century.[71]:24–34 Others have discussed the ongoing dominance of New York and London, and the role linkages between these two financial centres played in the financial crisis of 2007–08.[72]

Comparisons of financial centres focus on their history, role and significance in serving national, regional and international financial activity. Each centre's offering includes differing legal, tax and regulatory environments.[93] One journalist suggested three prime factors for success as a financial city: a pool of money to lend or invest; a decent legal framework; and high-quality human resources.[94]

  • Dubai. The second largest emirate in the United Arab Emirates is a growing centre for finance in the Middle East, including for Islamic finance. Its emergence as a financial centre is relatively recent, although commercial banking activity in the UAE became established in the second half of the 20th century (the first commercial bank in Dubai was British Bank of the Middle East in 1946, and the first domestic commercial bank was the National Bank of Dubai established in 1963).[97]
  • Dublin. Dublin (via its International Financial Services Centre, "IFSC"), is a specialised financial services centre with a focus on fund administration and fund domiciling. It also conducts bespoke activities such as securitisation (largest in the EU[98]), and aircraft leasing.[99][100] Dublin is the second largest domicile for investment funds, particularly alternative investment funds, in the EU after Luxembourg. Many of the funds domiciled in Dublin are managed in London.[69]:5–6 Dublin's IFSC has effectively merged with its neighboring Silicon Docks technology zone (the non-US headquarters of Google, Facebook etc.), who have leveraged the same IFSC law and accounting firms to develop the US multinational tax management structures (i.e. double Irish, single malt etc.) Ireland is known for.[101]
  • Frankfurt. Frankfurt attracts many foreign banks which maintain offices in the city. It is the seat of Deutsche Börse, one of the leading stock exchanges and derivatives markets operators, and the European Central Bank, which sets the monetary policy for the single European currency, the euro; in addition, in 2014 the European Central Bank took over responsibility for banking supervision for the 18 countries which form the Eurozone. It is also the seat of Deutsche Bundesbank, the German central bank,[102] as well as of EIOPA, the EU's supervisory authority for insurances and occupational pension systems.[103]
Frankfurt has been the financial centre of Germany since the second half of the 20th century as it was before the mid-19th century. Berlin held the position during the intervening period, focusing on lending to European countries while London focused on lending to the Americas and Asia.[104][105]
  • London. London has been a leading international financial centre since the 19th century, acting as a centre of lending and investment around the world.[52]:74–75[109]:149 English contract law was adopted widely for international finance, with legal services provided in London.[110] Financial institutions located there provided services internationally such as Lloyd's of London (founded 1686) for insurance and the Baltic Exchange (founded 1744) for shipping.[111] During the 20th century London played an important role in the development of new financial products such as the Eurodollar and Eurobonds in the 1960s, international asset management and international equities trading in the 1980s, and derivatives in the 1990s.[53]:13[1]:6,12–13,88–9[57]
London continues to maintain a leading position as a financial centre in the 21st century, and maintains the largest trade surplus in financial services around the world.[112][113][114] However, like New York, it faces new competitors including fast-rising eastern financial centres such as Hong Kong and Shanghai. London is the largest centre for derivatives markets,[115] foreign exchange markets,[116] money markets,[117] issuance of international debt securities,[118] international insurance,[119] trading in gold, silver and base metals through the London bullion market and London Metal Exchange,[120] and international bank lending.[1]:2[57][121] London benefits from its position between the Asia and U.S. time zones,[122] and has benefited from its location within the European Union,[69]:1 though this may end following the outcome of the Brexit referendum of 2016 and the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union. As well as the London Stock Exchange, the Bank of England, the second oldest central bank, and the European Banking Authority are based in London, although the latter is moving to Paris in March 2019 following Brexit.[123]
  • Luxembourg. Luxembourg is a specialised financial services centre that is the largest location for investment fund domiciliation in Europe, and second in the world after the United States. Many of the funds domiciled in Luxembourg are managed in London.[69]:5–6 Luxembourg is the leading private banking centre in the Eurozone and the largest captive reinsurance centre in Europe. 143 banks from 28 different countries are established in Luxembourg.[124] The country is also the third largest renminbi centre in the world by numbers, in certain activities such as deposits, loans, bond listing and investment funds.[125] Three of the largest Chinese banks have their European hub in Luxembourg (ICBC, Bank of China, China Construction Bank).
  • Madrid. Madrid is the headquarters to the Spanish company Bolsas y Mercados Españoles, which owns the four stock exchanges in Spain, the largest being the Bolsa de Madrid. Trading of equities, derivatives and fixed income securities are linked through the Madrid-based electronic Spanish Stock Market Interconnection System (SIBE), handling more than 90% of all financial transactions. Madrid ranks fourth in European equities market capitalisation, and Madrid’s Stock Exchange is second in terms of number of listed companies, just behind New York Stock Exchange (NYSE plus NASDAQ).[126] As a financial centre, Madrid has extensive links with Latin America and acts as a gateway for many Latin American financial firms to access the EU banking and financial markets.[127]:6–7
  • Milan. The city is Italy's main centre of banking and finance. It hosts the Borsa Italiana stock exchange, one of the larger stock exchanges in Europe, which is now part of the London Stock Exchange Group.[128]:245
  • New York City. Since the middle of the 20th century, New York City, represented by Wall Street, has been described as a leading financial centre.[4]:1[71]:25[72]:4–5 Over the past few decades, with the rise of a multipolar world with new regional powers and global capitalism, numerous financial centres have challenged Wall Street, particularly London and several in Asia, which some analysts believe will be the focus of new worldwide growth.[73]:39–49[129] One source described New York as extending its lead as the world's centre of finance in November 2014; according to Kinetic Partners, "New York has proven that it can draw and maintain institutions that believe it is the best place to grow their businesses".[130]
New York City remains the largest centre for trading in public equity and debt capital markets, driven in part by the size and financial development of the U.S. economy.[73]:31–32[131] The NYSE and NASDAQ are the two largest stock exchanges in the world.[77] New York also leads in hedge fund management; private equity; and the monetary volume of mergers and acquisitions. Several investment banks and investment managers headquartered in New York City are important participants in other financial centres.[73]:34–35 The New York Federal Reserve Bank, the largest within the Federal Reserve System, regulates financial institutions and implements U.S. monetary policy,[78][132] which in turn influences the world's economy.[133][134] The three major global credit rating agenciesStandard and Poor's, Moody's Investor Service, and Fitch Ratings – are headquartered or co-headquartered in New York City, with Fitch being co-headquartered in London.
  • Paris. Alongside equity trading on the Paris Stock Exchange, there is futures and options trading, insurance, corporate banking and asset management taking place in Paris.[135] The city is home to the Banque de France and the European Securities and Markets Authority. Paris has been a major financial centre since the 19th century.[4]:1 The European Banking Authority is also moving to Paris in March 2019 following Brexit.[136]
  • Seoul. South Korea's capital has developed significantly as a financial centre since the late-2000s recession. In 2009, Seoul ranked 53rd among global financial centres; by 2012, Seoul had risen to number 9.[137] Seoul has continued to build office space with the completion of the International Financial Center Seoul in 2013. It ranked 7th in the 2015 Global Financial Centres Index, recording the highest growth in rating among the top ten cities.
  • Shanghai. Official efforts have been directed to making Pudong a financial leader by 2010.[138] Efforts during the 1990s were mixed, but in the early 21st century, Shanghai gained ground. Factors such as a "protective banking sector" and a "highly restricted capital market" have held the city back, according to one analysis in 2009 in China Daily.[139] Shanghai has done well in terms of market capitalisation but it needs to "attract an army of money managers, lawyers, accountants, actuaries, brokers and other professionals, Chinese and foreign" to enable it to compete with New York and London.[140] China is generating tremendous new capital, which makes it easier to stage initial public offerings of state-owned companies in places like Shanghai.[141]
  • Singapore. With its strong links with London,[82] Singapore has developed into the Asia region’s largest centre for foreign exchange and commodity trading, as well as a growing wealth management hub.[142] Other than Tokyo, it is one of the main centres for fixed income trading in Asia. However, the market capitalisation of its stock exchange has been falling since 2014 and several major companies plan to delist.[143]
  • Sydney. Australia's most populous city is a financial and business services hub not only for Australia but for the Asia-Pacific region. Sydney competes quite closely with other Asia Pacific hubs, however it concentrates a greater portion of Australian-based business in terms of clients and services. Sydney is home to two of Australia's four largest banks, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Westpac Banking Corporation, both headquartered in the Sydney CBD. Sydney is also home to 12 of the top 15 asset managers in Australia, Melbourne on the other hand tends to concentrate more of the Australian superannuation funds (pension funds). Sydney is using the large Barangaroo development project on its harbour to further position itself as an Asian Pacific hub.[144] Sydney is also home to the Australian Securities Exchange and an array of brokerage banks which are either headquartered or regionally based in Sydney including Australia's largest investment bank Macquarie Group.[145][146]
  • Tokyo. One report suggests that Japanese authorities are working on plans to transform Tokyo but have met with mixed success, noting that "initial drafts suggest that Japan's economic specialists are having trouble figuring out the secret of the Western financial centres' success."[147] Efforts include more English-speaking restaurants and services and the building of many new office buildings in Tokyo, but more powerful stimuli such as lower taxes have been neglected and a relative aversion to finance remains prevalent in Japan.[147] Tokyo emerged as a major financial centre in the 1980s as the Japanese economy became one of the largest in the world.[4]:1 As a financial centre, Tokyo has good links with New York City and London.[148][149]
  • Toronto. The city is a leading market for Canada's largest financial institutions and large insurance companies. It has also become one of the fastest growing financial centres following the late-2000s recession, helped by the stability of the Canadian banking system. Most of the financial industry is concentrated along Bay Street, where the Toronto Stock Exchange is also located.[150]
  • Zurich. Zurich is a significant centre for banking, asset management including provision of alternative investment products, and insurance.[151][152][153] Since Switzerland is not a member of the European Union, Zurich is not directly subject to EU regulation.
  • Others. Mumbai is an emerging financial centre, which also provides international support services to London and other financial centres.[154][155][156] Cities such as São Paulo, Mexico City and Johannesburg and other "would-be hubs" lack liquidity and the "skills base," according to one source.[94] Financial industries in countries and regions such as the Indian subcontinent and Malaysia require not only well-trained people but the "whole institutional infrastructure of laws, regulations, contracts, trust and disclosure" which takes time to happen.[94]

New York Times journalist Daniel Gross wrote:

One example of Gross' assertion was the then alternative trading platform known as BATS, based in Kansas City, which came "out of nowhere to gain a 9 percent share in the market for trading United States stocks."[141] The firm had computers in the U.S. state of New Jersey, two salespersons in New York City, but the remaining 33 employees work in a centre in Kansas.[141] BATS went on to become a fully registered exchange and eventually acquired Direct Edge.[157] Charlotte is the second-largest banking centre in the United States, after New York City. Bank of America, the United States' second-largest bank is headquartered here, as well as a secondary headquarters for Wells Fargo. BB&T, MetLife, TIAA-CREF, and SunTrust Banks all have a major corporate presence in the city.

Offshore financial centres[edit]

"Uncovering Offshore Financial Centers": Network of ownership connections between countries
"Uncovering Offshore Financial Centers": 24 Sink OFCs ordered by value (showing U.K. dependencies)

An offshore financial centre (or "OFC"), although not precisely defined, is usually a small, low-tax jurisdiction specialising in providing corporate and commercial services to non-residents in the form of offshore companies and the investment of offshore funds.[8] The term is synonymous with smaller corporate tax havens.[158][159]

The term offshore financial centre is a modern neologism.[160] Although the terms are not synonymous, some offshore finance centres are regarded as "tax havens", and the lack of a definition leads to confusion between the concepts. In Tolley's International Initiatives Affecting Financial Havens[161] the glossary of terms defines an "offshore financial centre" in forthright terms as "a politically correct term for what used to be called a tax haven." However, this is qualified by adding "The use of this term makes the important point that a jurisdiction may provide specific facilities for offshore financial centres without being in any general sense a tax haven."

In 2009 the International Financial Centres Forum (IFC Forum) was established by a group of professional service firms with offices in the leading offshore centres.[162] According to its website, the IFC Forum aims to provide information about the role of the small international financial centres in the global economy.

A 2017 study into offshore financial centres, published in Nature, "Uncovering Offshore Financial Centers: Conduits and Sinks in the Global Corporate Ownership Network",[83] adopted an empirical quantitative approach to classifying offshore financial centres by examining over 98 million company connections. The results identified two types of offshore financial centre, Conduits and Sinks, and was reported as an important breakthrough in the academic and financial media:[163][164][165]

  • 24 global Sink OFCs: jurisdictions in which a disproportional amount of value disappears from the economic system (see table opposite)
  • 5 global Conduit OFCs: jurisdictions through which a disproportional amount of value moves toward sink-OFCs:
    (Conduits are: Netherlands, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Singapore, Ireland)

The study showed, quantitatively, that almost 47% of the global corporate connections to traditional tax havens were via Conduit OFCs (or corporate tax havens).

Analysis by Gabriel Zucman however, shows the CORPNET report still underestimates Ireland as possibly the largest corporate Conduit OFC in the world.[166]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ In a number of large cities, the name International Financial Centre is given to skyscrapers in business districts, for example the landmark International Finance Centre in Hong Kong.
  2. ^ The concept of the bourse (or the exchange) was 'invented' in the medieval Low Countries, most notably in predominantly Dutch-speaking cities like Bruges and Antwerp, before the birth of formal stock exchanges in the 17th century. From Flemish cities the term 'beurs' spread to other European states where it was corrupted into 'bourse', 'borsa', 'bolsa', 'börse', etc. In Britain, too, the term 'bourse' was used between 1550 and 1775, eventually giving way to the term 'royal exchange'. Until the early 1600s, a bourse was not exactly a stock exchange in its modern sense. With the founding of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) in 1602 and the rise of Dutch capital markets in the early 17th century, the 'old' bourse (a place to trade commodities, government and municipal bonds) found a new purpose – a formal exchange that specialize in creating and sustaining secondary markets in the securities (such as bonds and shares of stock) issued by corporations – or a stock exchange as we know it today.[27]

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